The release last February of the masterpiece, “Nightwatching”, shows how Peter Greenaway continues to hold a place as one of the most original and brilliant visionaries of contemporary cinema. Former art student and an artist by trade, he came to filmmaking in the 60’s and 70’s through experimental cinema and then to universal notoriety with “The Draughtman’s Contract” in 1982, from then on occupying a unique position in British and European filmmaking. This multi-skilled artist has always drawn inspiration from other artistic disciplines in which he is accomplished, such as painting, music, theatre, opera or architecture, for his films, which are often hailed as cult masterpieces, including “Drowning by Numbers”, “The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover” or “The Pillow Book”. Without forgetting the use of new technologies, progressively integrated into his work both as another tool for expression and as an end in itself. Although the cinema seems to be a form of creation among so many others for him, it brings with it the keys for understanding his passionate and abundant work, where humour, even absurdity, hides behind formalism and structure. There is a dialogue between the films, patterns appear and serial obsessions keep coming back. The way in which Greenaway cuts across different disciplines is beautifully illustrated through several programmes of short and medium-length films made since the 1970’s, with the British Film Institute, to the present-day, as well as films made for the small screen, seen as a specific creative arena. An unusual documentary about the contemporary composer Philip Glass and a film-portrait of the filmaker complete the selection, along with his presence at the Festival and his own insight into his career.
A cycle of the filmmaker’s feature films will be shown at the cinema Les Studios from Wednesday 29th October to Tuesday 11th November.